Vocational schools are schools which teach kids skill from a specific line of work. A vocational school can have many different jobs they teach, and they take a hands-on approach to teaching. Most people assume vocational schools are four-year degrees after high school, but that is not always the case, but we will get to that. There are plenty of things people who went to a vocational school can relate to, so I thought it would be great to go through some of them here.
What Grade Are You In?
For starters, a lot of people consider a vocational school to be after high school years, in place of college, but that is not true. There are plenty of vocational options that can start as early as 11th grade! I went to one of these schools, the (censored because I talk down one of my teachers later in the article) for my 11th and 12th-grade years, studying digital media. Half my day consisted of the regular classes, and the other half I spent making videos and learning cinematography.
I call this class warfare because there are classes that rival other classes. I remember the I.T. kids disliking the digital media kids because they said we did not do anything besides play on a computer all day, but I challenge one of those nerds to try to storyboard a screenplay better than me. As I digress, each class sticks together, like mob mentality. It does not really make sense to outsiders, but when you spend 3 hours a day with someone 5 days a week, you tend to be a lot closer in that sense at least.
At a vocational school, your teachers are usually a lot more laid back than a typical school. Especially the teachers who teach general studies. This laid back attitude is not always the best for you though, because you end up relying mostly on you teaching yourself. I had two math teachers at my redacted school, and neither one knew how to teach. My female teacher gave 3 question quizzes, so if you miss one answer, you got a 66%. My male teacher relied on one of those stupid math software programs that teach you nothing.
The Teachers 2.0
I gave this one its own entry because it seems to be something plenty of my fellow vocational school alumni can agree on. Vocational schools seem to have more heavily religious people for some reason. It can be either student or teachers, but you are bound to hear some sort of religious blahblahblah when you walk into a vocational school. I am not quite sure if it is more religious people at the school, or if the people at a vocational school are just more vocal about their beliefs, but ask any alumni and I am sure they have a story.
Riding The Bus
Now, this one only applies to kids in high school who attend a vocational school, who can not drive and must rely on the bussing. In short, it really is a nightmare to get to and from school every day. For example here was how I got to school. The middle school bus would pick my 11th grade, football-playing ass up, and drop the middle schoolers off. Next, I would do another complete school bus route to pick up the high school kids, and finally, get off at my high school. From there, I waited for the vocational school bus to pick me up and take me to school. Needless to say, I got my license as quick as I could to avoid those middle schoolers.
Not A Real School
Another thing you will hear a lot when talking about your school is that it is not a real school. For some reason, people think since you are not sitting down with a pencil and paper, watching stupid PowerPoint slides, then you are not learning. Anyone who has taken a class can attest that it is some of the most difficult school assignments you will ever do. Do not waste your time arguing with these people, they will not change their minds.
One of the best parts of any big vocational school is that it most likely offers a culinary program, and as such, they prepare plenty of great meals for breakfast and lunch. You might initially be skeptical of food prepared by your classmates, but remember, these are people training to go into the field of culinary. They take it seriously, and once you taste the food, you will believe that wholeheartedly.
The Misinterpretations About You
The biggest thing any vocational / trade school alumni can agree with is that for some reason there is a negative public opinion of them. Plenty of people will say that vocational school kids are bad, unprepared, unskilled, and a plethora of other false statements. For one, a vocational school does not accept every student who applies, so typically the “bad kids” do not get in. Secondly, I would argue a trade school goer is more prepared than the average student because they know exactly what they want to do. Lastly, people will say vocational school kids are unskilled because they choose to go another route other than the standard public high school. Just because someone chose to go against the grain and pick a path other than yours, does not make them any less than you. One of the funniest experiences I had was the number of people who approached me at my home school graduation and told me they wished they went to redacted school but did not because they heard so many bad things. They lost though, that is what they get for not making their own decisions.
Vocational schools are not anything how the general public believes, and is a unique experience only someone who attended classes at one could relate to. Ask any of your vocational school alumni buddies for their horror stories, I guarantee they have several. Did I forget any good things only vocational kids relate to? If so, let me know in the comments below!
Senior at Central State University. Major in Broadcast Media!